A mild drama played out, yesterday, at the premises of the Rivers State High Court complex, as the embattled former Chairman of Asari-Toru Local Government Area, Ojukaye Flag-Amachree, who is facing murder trial, was brought to court on a stretcher.
This came as the judge handling case, Justice Adama Iyayi-Lamikanra, withdrew from the matter.
Iyayi-Lamikanra said, yesterday, when the matter came up, that several petitions had been written against her to the National Judicial Council, NJC, by the accused person.
Iyayi-Lamikanra, who stated that the council had started investigations on the petitions, said she will discontinue with the matter for another judge to take over in the interest of justice.
However, the judge, after dismissing a bail application brought before her, remanded the accused in prison custody and adjourned till November 17.
Meanwhile, during the court proceedings, Amachree was pushed into the court room dressed in a brown gown and lying motionless on a stretcher. An uproar followed.
The accused person, who was earlier charged for the murder of one Smart Soberekon, was re-arraigned on a four-count charge bordering on attempted murder of one Ipalibo.
The accused person, whose condition drew sympathy, could not take plea as he remained speechless throughout the period of the proceedings.
The defence counsel, Emenike Ebete, prayed the court to stop the reading of the charges to the accused as he was unconscious. He pleaded with the court to adjourn the matter to allow Amachree recover and respond to the charges against him.
However, the prosecution counsel, Godwin Obla, objected to the oral application by the defence counsel, and the health condition of the accused.
Obla noted that there was no medical report or any doctor from the prisons authorities that had announced his presence before the court to authenticate the health claim.
The judge, after listening to the submissions, overruled the defence counsel’s oral application, saying the issue of bail was already at the Court of Appeal and that it was verbal.